Which is better way to sell furniture online? Your own E-Commerce shop or becoming a seller on e-commerce stores like Amazon/Flipkart?
Online marketing is the new trend whether it is the daily need items or the bulky furniture. Gone are the times when people used to travel from one furniture store to another in search of the best piece of furniture for their homes.
Now it is just a matter of a single click and everything is purchased online. If you too own a furniture business and are witnessing a slump in the business activity due to the enlargement of the online business, then you should consider selling your furniture online.
There are two ways you can do this – either by owning an e-commerce shop or becoming a seller on e-commerce marketplaces like Amazon/Flipkart.
Both the ways have their own pros and cons. In this article we’ll discuss about the benefits and shortcomings of each one of them so that you can decide wisely and take your own stand.
Selling furniture online through your own E-Commerce store/Website:
Having your own e-commerce store or you can say your own website, is a great and commendable step in the direction of selling the furniture online.
If you have decided to own a website of your own then probably you have taken the right step as it has the potential of giving a boost to your income and encouraging the growth of your business.
You get the following benefits if you sell the furniture on your own e-commerce shop.
- You get a chance to eliminate your competitors:
People visiting your website will get to see only those products which are made available by you. Whereas on the websites like the Amazon/Flipkart, products from many other sellers are also available which diverts the focus of the buyer and they might like the other products.
So by selling the products on your own e-commerce store you won’t lose your sales to other competitor brands which are also selling their products online on the same website at lower prices than you.
- You can increase your profits:
When you own a website you can mention the prices of the products as per your wish. You do not have to take account of the prices mentioned by other competitors. Every time you sell a piece of furniture on your website, you gain higher profits.
- You can eliminate the selling fees:
When you sell the products on your own e-commerce store, then you do not have to pay any fee for listing your items. This fee is capable of draining a huge part of your profits.
- Your products carry a professional look:
When you own a dedicated furniture website, customers will find it more professional rather than selling your furniture items on the websites like Amazon/Flipkart.
A website that is designed professionally will earn the trust of the buyers and they will feel more comfortable buying furniture from a dedicated furniture e-commerce store.
There are some shortcomings which might come your way when you decide to sell the furniture on your own website.
- Your website may not experience high traffic initially:
It is quite natural that initially when you start your own e-commerce store less people may visit your website. But with time you can gain popularity and increase the buyer traffic.
If you are not able to drive quality traffic to your website then all your effort and investment on the store will go waste.
- You have to build a strong support system:
If anything goes wrong on your website, customers look for a sound technical support. If you own a website you should make sure that you have a robust customer support system.
- Initial Investment:
You have to invest initially to build the online furniture store and then to drive people or build traffic to the store.You will also have to spend amount to build your customer support and technical support teams.
So not all of the furniture retail stores may not have this much of funding at the initial stage and even if they have,they may not want to take risk by investing this much money without knowing the result.
These are some of the shortcomings which will drive sellers towards popular E-commerce stores like Amazon and Flipkart in India.
Now, let us have a look at the pros and cons of selling your furniture products in an existing online marketplace.
Selling furniture online through Popular E-Commerce stores in India:
Here are some of the positives of becoming a seller on e-commerce stores
- You can potentially increase your sales:
E-commerce stores like Amazon/Flipkart have a large online presence. They witness huge customer traffic on a daily basis and therefore you increase your chances of getting noticed by the buyers.
When you have such a large customer base, your sales will surely register growth. If you wish to showcase your furniture business to more number of people, then selling on an online marketplace can be a great idea.
- You do not need to worry about the infrastructure:
Online marketplaces have a robust payment and support infrastructure. Also, they sell a variety of products to a large number of customers every day. Thus, they are experts at taking care of the needs of the customers and dealing with them on a regular basis.
The website will handle all the transactions and you’ll not be required to put in extra efforts towards having a secure payment gateway.
- Customers trust established websites:
It is a normal human tendency to trust those sellers who have been in the market for long. Same is the case with the buyers online. Websites like Amazon/Flipkart have been serving the customers for long now and therefore people trust the items sold on them.
Some of the disadvantages of selling furniture on online marketplace
- You might end up paying hefty fees:
If you have just started your business, you might have to spend a lot towards paying the listing/selling fees on the websites like Amazon/Flipkart.
They deduct this fee from the revenues earned by your sales. If you are selling your products at a low profit then all your profits might get consumed in paying the fee.
- Your products might get lost in the crowd:
You should be ready to face a stiff competition from the other brands of the same product. There are many brands selling their products on these websites and therefore it might happen that your business doesn’t get the needed customer attention.
- You do not make your own customers:
When customers buy your products from Amazon/Flipkart, these websites get the customer information. You receive no customer information to target them in future.
In conclusion, it can be said that selling on an existing e-commerce store can be a good idea to start off, but if you plan to run a long-term furniture business then you should have a website of your own.
Even if you want to run a long term business,you can become a seller on one of the popular e-commerce store to learn the tricks and assess the market and the same can be applied to improve sales through your own website.
If you are still not sure and confused,please comment with your queries and we would be happy to assist you.
If you are a seller in a marketplace or own a store,please do comment with your experience to help everyone.
Categorised in: HOME FURNITURE